Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Text Messaging

4 33 666 777 4 33 - 22 88 7777 44 - 444 7777 - 8 44 33 - 9 888 777 7777 8 - 7 777 33 7777 444 3 33 66 8 - 666 333 - 2 555 555 - 8 444 6 33.

By the way, back in the day I had a friend who was terrified whenever he saw the numbers 666. 666, apparently, is the "mark of the beast" and he grew up very Christian. So if - for example - the total value at the grocery store was $6.66, he would suddenly get very irked and sometimes even consider buying something else just to have the final price be a different number.

Explain this to me. Not where 666 comes from, because supposedly it is biblical, but why I should care, literally, about the numbers 666.

Here is what I want you to consider: Back when the new testament was written, the number "6" didn't exist. Sure, there was a mathematical six, but the symbol of the 6 was not used.

Now, in Hebrew (the original language of the Christian Bible), they did not have a number that looked like six. The number six would have been a vav, which looks like this: ו

So if you were looking for 666, you would probably actually be looking for ווו which looks really more like three near straight lines rather than three 6's. If you were looking for Greek, you would be looking for this: χξς or this: ςςς which is 666 in Greek. While the number six hundred and sixty six may be frightening - and I can respect that - the number "6" didn't exist until long after the new testament was written.

Tell you what, though. If I'm watching the register, and suddenly "ווו" shows up as my total, I'm willing to be frightened too.

1 comment:

Librocrat said...

Note: The "vav" did not show up correctly, but you can see it here